The 2021 Campus Involvement Fair during the first weekend of fall semester 2021.

The 2021 Campus Involvement Fair during the first weekend of fall semester 2021.

Enrollment on the Rise

Published August 15, 2022

Class of 2026 enrollment numbers increase for second year in a row

By Payton Daugherty | For The Post

Enrollment numbers for the class of 2026 are continuing Ohio University’s positive enrollment streak with higher numbers than the class of 2025. This is an uptick after a decline in enrollment over the previous years.

Candace Boeninger, the vice president for enrollment management, said the best indicator for enrollment is the housing confirmation and the commuter application processes.

As of mid-June, about 4,600 students had completed the processes; however, an expected loss of around 150 students is possible. According to a previous Post report, the class of 2025 included 3,664 students.

Boeninger said she believes many factors play into the increased enrollment of the incoming class.

“Ohio University just has really strong momentum right now. We are popular among our Ohio high school students and their families,” Boeninger said. “They are seeing the good work that is happening here that’s getting amplified by the work that our colleagues and University Communications and Marketing have done.”

Boeninger said a lot of effort was put into campus visits to fulfill the interests of prospective students and families. Among them was the opportunity to visit campus following the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“During the early days of reopening, we were one of the first institutions to implement COVID safe, in-person tours and that happened at a time when many other institutions were still not quite able to figure out how to do that,” Boeninger said. “We did it in really creative ways while also keeping in place all of the necessary COVID protocols.”

Lexie Nagel, a freshman studying studio fine arts, was one of the students who attended a safe post-COVID-19 tour. Nagel attended an OHIO Up Close Day and a tour of some of the art buildings in November.

Nagel also applied to the University of Toledo, the University of Dayton and Wright State University and visited the Wright State Lake campus and Bluffton University. Nagel said she ultimately chose OU because she loved the campus and thought the staff was friendly.

“The people on the staff are awesome. I could talk to my professors even though I wasn’t even enrolled yet,” Nagel said. “I was able to just talk to them and email them, and they were very responsive. It was very personal, which I did not get with (the) other colleges I applied to.”

Madeline Davis, a freshman studying pre-nursing, also attended a post-COVID-19 OHIO Up Close day. Davis said she originally wanted to stay close to home and attend a community college, but after visiting OU for the first time, she said she knew OU was the place for her.

“(OHIO Up Close day) was my second time visiting the campus because I had gone on one of the general tours earlier in the year … after I made my decision. I got to learn more about my major and I got to see the buildings where I was going to be taking my classes. My tour guide… was also a nursing major and it just felt so personal. It only made me feel more comfortable on campus,” Davis said. “I just knew I wanted to be there.”

AUTHOR: Payton Daugherty
EDITOR: Addie Hedges
COPY EDITOR: Lauren Serge
PHOTO: Ryan Grzybowski
WEB DEVELOPMENT: Anastasia Carter